Leadership Lessons from Eliot Spitzer

Last Updated Mar 12, 2008 5:38 PM EDT

Feeling shock, schadenfreude or maybe a little smirky over Eliot Spitzer's resignation? Good. Now look in the mirror.

Lots of leaders are prone to the same issues that probably caused Spitzer to misstep, says Michael Stallard, a management consultant and author (here's Big Think's review of his book, "Fired Up or Burned Out"). Stallard believes that the best leaders make and maintain strong connections with people in their organization. Stallard's post, Spitzer's Self-Sabotage: Why? , saying that Spitzer fits the classic stereotype of a leader who became disconnected from everything but work. Stallard warns other leaders in the same position to take action now to stop themselves from ending up in Spitzer's shoes. Signs that the shoe fits: you're moving a lot of money around in your bank accounts. You're a zealot. Perhaps the press fawns on you. You commit the top 10 leadership mistakes. Repeatedly (everybody makes mistakes).

A little self-assessment could save a lot of pain.

Other BNet posts on the Spitzer's downfall:

Bill Holstein on Corner Office had warned that Spitzer had ethical blind spots some three years ago, as noted in this post Eliot Spitzer's Character: I told you so.
Jon Greer, meanwhile, is asking how Spitzer lost control of the message, making it look like he was part of running a prostitution ring instead of hiring a member of one.

  • Michael Fitzgerald

    Michael Fitzgerald writes about innovation and other big ideas in business for publications like the New York Times, The Economist, Fast Company, Inc. and CIO. He’s worked as a writer or editor at Red Herring, ZDNet, TechTV and Computerworld, and has received numerous awards as a writer and editor. Most recently, his piece on the hacker collective the l0pht won the 2008 award for best trade piece from the American Society of Journalists and Authors. He was also a 2007 Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellow in Science and Religion.